© 2015 - Cooperative Metropolitan Ministries (CMM)
474 Centre Street - Newton, MA 02458
Office: (617) 244-3650

Rodney Petersen, Executive Director (
Karin Firoza, IFYI Program Director (
Alicen Roberts, Program & Development Coordinator (
Dan Carman, Communications & Marketing Coordinator (
General Inquiries (
Last Update: July 2015

Our Mission:
To mobilize congregations and communities across economic, religious, racial, and ethnic boundaries so that, in partnership, we can work more effectively for a just and peaceful society and for spiritual growth and interfaith understanding.
Current eNews Letter from Communications Director,
Dan Carman, and Executive Director, Rodney Petersen:

June 26th, 2015

Friends of CMM,

The month of Ramadan began on June 18. It is observed by Muslims worldwide to commemorate the first revelation of the Quran to Muhammad. This year Ramadan follows Shavuot, May 23-25, God's giving the Torah to the Jewish people at Mount Sinai. In between these two celebrations comes Pentecost, May 24, a day celebrated by Christians to acknowledge the descent of the Holy Spirit and birth of the Church. 

Each of these revered holy days is challenged by contemporary social change. Issues of racism, sexism and religious misunderstanding challenge each of our different religious communities. In the United States we are reevaluating the depth of racism that exists, notably through recent murders in Charleston. The ruling by the Supreme Court mandating equality of marriage, a case of manifest justice for some is for others an occasion of misunderstanding and bitterness. The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is opening a new chapter here in Massachusetts as issues of Islamophobia and extreme Islamic militancy cloud the MIT campus. The nature of this social reality asks that we examine anew the historic revelations that have guided many of this world’s faithful. 

Violence often comes with social change. In addition to the communal violence which plagues our land, there have been severe instances of violence across the world in France, Tunisia and Kuwait, to name but three instances, making evident the conversation on forgiveness and justice that needs to happen for peace to prevail. CMM continues this conversation into its next stage of the “Values over Violence” project, as graduated individuals are readying themselves to take this just peace training to the local and wider human community.
In one month from today, youth (aged 14-22) will come together from all faith backgrounds for interfaith leadership and peace building training at our Interfaith Youth Initiative (IFYI), headed up by CMM staff, theological students from the region, and by IFYI Program Director, Karin Firoza. We are all very excited to roll out this program once again at Brandeis University and see it as an important step to foster the next generation of interfaith conscious leaders. With hope, good work and the leading of the Spirit, this world can be changed!

In Peace,
Dan & Rodney
CMM Dialogue Dinner on "Interfaith Responses to Homelessness in Our Communities" on June 9th, 2015, at board member Maxine Lyons' home.
​Values Over Violence graduation in Port Norfolk, June 3rd, 2015.
Response to Charleston, South Carolina Shooting 6/18/15

We all woke up to disturbing news that is all too familiar in our society. The tragedy of this hate-filled shooting is yet another senseless massacre that is particularly heartbreaking due to it happening in this community’s sacred space. The families and community of Charleston, South Carolina are in our thoughts and prayers. The President said it best this afternoon that at some point this country has “to reckon with the fact that this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries. It doesn’t happen in other places with this kind of frequency.” He spoke of Dr. King’s hope after four little girls who were killed in a bombing in a black church in Birmingham, Alabama that their deaths “say to us that we must be concerned not merely with who murdered them, but about the system, the way of life, the philosophy which produced the murderers.” Now, we pray for the uplifting of this church and community, as we collectively work towards that end.